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Pier 1 offers ‘no comment’ to NYSE inquiry

Fort Worth,Texas-- Pier 1 Imports said it was notified yesterday by the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) of unusual trading activity in the company's stock.

Pier 1 would only say, “The NYSE has asked the company to respond by press release to the unusual activity. The company's policy is not to comment on market rumors or speculation including unusual market activity.”

As HTT reported recently, Pier 1 issued a special statement in early October to clarify – to deny, in effect – quotes made by chairman and ceo Marvin Girouard and published in the Fort Worth Star Telegram to the effect that the company’s board of directors was close to a sale price with a strategic buyer

. The company at that time said, “Pier 1 makes no prediction whatsoever as to when, if ever, Pier 1’s board will reach an agreement with respect to a proposed transaction.”

In May 2006, the company announced it had retained JPMorgan to explore strategic alternatives.Last March, HTT reported that Pier 1 said it had sold itsUnited KingdomandIrelandoperating division to Dutch retail investor Jakup a Dul Jacobsen for "approximately $15 million," and that Jacobsen had purchased 9.9% of Pier 1 in January 2006.

The home furnishings specialty retailer recorded $1.78 billion in sales for fiscal 2006 (endedFeb. 25, 2006), down 2.7% from $1.82 billion the previous year, with a comp-store drop of 7.1%. The company reported a fiscal 2006net loss from continuing operations of $27,471,000 or $0.32 per share.

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